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When summer’s on its way, it’s easy to buy a ton of swimsuits and little else, because swimsuits are fun. Swimsuits are cute. Swimsuits instantly transport us to a world of the shining sun and high temperatures—a reality that hasn’t been ours for far too long. The only issue? Rarely does one go to the beach, or pool, or lake in a swimsuit and only a swimsuit—nay, we adorn ourselves with swim cover-ups to complete the look.
I, however, have never been able to find a cover-up that I actually like to wear. For too long I have relied on an old vintage t-shirt to wear over my bikini after a day spent in the water but I feel like I actually need to up my beachwear game in 2023. There are so many options to choose from, so it looks like I’m in luck.
Case in point: the seven cover-up trends that I’ve included on this list. I’ve even broken them down into sections so you can keep track of your favorites and you won’t have to spend hours and hours perusing the web. I would also be lying to you right now if I said that I didn’t already add a few of my top picks to my online cart. I have a shopping addiction—I can’t help it! I’ve got it all, from lightweight sarongs to beautiful maxi dresses.
Read on to shop my favorite cover-ups from brands like Aerie, Revolve, Zara and more. Summer is almost here, people! It’s time to stock up.
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The Oversized Button-Down
No pants? No problem, as long as your button-down is oversized enough. The Matilda Djerf style cover-up is not only cute for the beach but also for your everyday life. Wear it sans pants on the weekend and with a pair of slacks when it’s time for your 9-5.
The Short Effortless Shirt Dress Coverup
This button-down was made to be a cover-up so the hemline is an accommodating longer length. It’s available in navy or white and would look great unbuttoned over a neutral swimsuit.
Cotton Long Sleeve Cover Up
The key to picking a long sleeve cover-up for the beach is for it to be ultra light-weight. This option comes in eight colors and guarantees that you’ll be feeling breezy while protecting your skin from the sun.
The Beach Pants
White linen pants—AKA “beach pants”—have been a longtime staple in my summer wardrobe, so I’m happy to see them getting some much-needed attention for summer 2023. Trust me, you will wear these everywhere.
High-Waisted Linen-Blend Wide-Leg Pants
This easy pair of linen beach pants from Old Navy is going to be one of your most-worn items this summer, I can feel it. They’re available in sizes XS through 4X and a classic linen shade is always a good move.
Retreat Linen Wide Leg Pant
Athleta makes a great pair of linen pants if you’re on the go. This pair comes in four beachy colors and is available in regular, petite and tall lengths in sizes 0-26.
It doesn’t get more classic than a sarong in the summer. They’ve been around for years and somehow feel fresh and sexy every single season! You’ve got tons of options to choose from for summer 2023, from simple mini versions to longer patterned picks.
Mini Pareo Sarong
Forget a beach towel, a terry cloth sarong is so much cuter. This one will add a cute pop of color to any of your bikinis
Short Sarong Beach Wrap
This swim sarong doubles as a scarf which means you can also wear it wrapped stylishly around your heart. It comes in dozens of colors and patterns and is only $10.
The Beach Cardi
These breezy beach cardigans are perfect for when you want to look like you’re an Insta-famous model in a pinch. A cardigan-style coverup can create a new vibe for your outfit. Between mesh, lace or linen options, you can even take a beach look from day to night.
Late Nights Pearl Mesh Cardigan
If you have a pool party in the future or a spring break trip planned, this mesh cardigan will make your simple bikini party-ready.
Cosmic Dreamer Kimono Beach Cover-Up
This dreamy floral cardigan has a drawstring tie so you can keep everything covered up or untie it and let it blow in the breeze.
The Matching Set
So let’s say you’re the type of person who likes to go straight from the beach to the bar for happy hour. I hear you and I support you in your endeavors. To serve looks, you need a cute AF matching set that takes you from the sand to the drinks.
Animal Print Set
Pool-To-Party Cover Up
This pool-to-party cover-up from Aerie has the perfect name because it will take you from one event to the next. It’s the perfect combination of button-down and matching set trends. The set has frayed edges and almost looks like denim. It’s available in 10 colors so you can mix and match if you want.
The Mini Dress
I love a piece that pulls double-duty in my closet, especially in the summer. Bringing a cute mini dress made from linen or cotton with you on vacation is a great way to A) save space in your suitcase and B) lower the cost-per-wear on your favorite pieces.
Talulah Knit Mini Dress
This mesh mini dress comes in a gorgeous shade of green that will pop against the ocean and palm trees as your background. You can throw this over your suit for a cute dinner-ready look.
Short Embroidered Dress
If you want to channel your inner Mamma Mia movie dream, a white embroidered dress is the cover-up for you.
The Maxi Dress
Wearing a maxi dress is a great way to add a little bit of lightweight coverage to your next beach look. Whether you go for a colorful tie-dyed option or a more form-fitting knit pick, you will look like a real-life beach goddess.
On My Level Maxi Dress
No heels or accessories are needed for this dress because it’s fabulous all on its own. Pack this for your beach day for the ultimate golden hour picture.
Floral Print Dress
This floral dress can look casual for a poolside lunch or can be paired with large sparkly earrings and heels for a summer wedding—literally get a dress that can do both.